Touch Base

My parents recently visited us for a long weekend.

Even though they are on the East Coast and we are in Texas, we
try to see them once a quarter.

They’re not so much interested in seeing me. It’s their first
grandson, Miguel, who is the big draw. They are always amazed and
delighted at all the new things their grandson is doing.

The big progression since they saw him at Christmas: how well
he is reading.

Yes, kids in kindergarten read now. It’s fascinating how quickly
they develop this skill once they get started. We encourage Miguel
to read a lot, in all different subject areas. He reads to us and
we read to him.

Very cool!

On the not so cool side: my parents were also amazed and dismayed
at some of the new words Miguel has picked up from classmates
and friends. You know, the ones who have older brothers or sisters
and therefore learn these “not-so-good” words from their siblings?

And then repeat them because they are getting a reaction?

If you have kids, or are close to family members’ or friends’ kids,
you sort of lose track of all the changes going on. You see them
every day, so the changes don’t register with you as much as with
someone who sees the child infrequently.

And boy, do they change! The growth is amazing.

This got me to thinking about how much I had changed since I last
saw my folks. Had I learned much more that was new and helpful?
Had I improved much, or at all. Had I made meaningful progress
toward my goals?

It’s a good idea to “touch base” with yourself on a regular
basis,  perhaps weekly, at least monthly — and assess how you
have changed.

One of your goals as an adult should be to keep that childlike
curiosity and wonderment that makes the world so interesting, so
alive. It’s the best way I know to get out of — make that stay
out of — the emotional and psychic ruts we are all prone to fall

If you are trying to lose weight and get in shape, have you made
progress in your workouts? Progress on the scale, or in your
measurements? Are you making better food choices now than you
were a month ago?

How about your health – either physical or mental? Have you
taken steps, no matter how small, to improve your breathing
skills, which help you cope with and improve a health issue and 
better manage stress or anxiety?

Have you learned something new and exciting about a subject that
interests you? Have you learned something new about your spouse,
significant other, or good friend?

Making the commitment to measure yourself, in any and all ways
that make sense to you, is an important step toward achieving
lasting change and improvement.

It provides you with the impetus you need to make the choices
that move you forward. It helps you keep your goals and desires
front and center, so you think about them everyday. In turn,
this means you will be more likely to do something about your
goals every day.

Touching base also helps because it places an emphasis on
process, not just results.

In other words, if you are having difficulty achieving your goal,
or you are making slower progress than you expected, you may
get down on yourself, or even think about – heaven forbid! –
giving up on your goal.

Don’t do that! Instead, re-focus on your process: on the activities
you are doing each day to move you towards your goal.

Give yourself a gold star each day you do something positive
that moves you in the direction of your goal.

The great motivational and business leader, Earl Nightingale,
said that you are a success when you are making progress toward
meaningful, worthwhile goals.

See yourself as the success you are! Give yourself credit for
setting your sights higher, for taking on big goals and
challenges, and for not quitting.

I’ve found that one of the most powerful habits you can cultivate
is a daily health and fitness routine. Performing deep breathing
exercises (like the ones I teach you in the Secret Power of
Dynamic Energy Exercise Course
), or
doing calisthenics and stretching, or going for a daily walk or
run, is a life-enhancing, life-extending routine you will never
regret getting into.

I highly recommend performing deep breathing exercises first thing
in the morning. It’s a wonderfully energizing way to begin each
day. And you’ll continue to benefit throughout the day.

You won’t have to worry about “fitting it in later”.

And when you “touch base” at the end of the week, you’ll know
you are making progress toward your health and fitness goals.

You Can Do It!


“Best Breathing Exercises: Transform Body Mind and Spirit with
Dynamic Energy Exercise!”
Copyright, Karen Van Ness, 2011

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